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1367.5 - Western Australian Statistical Indicators, Jun 2008  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 16/07/2008   
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Feature articles

Migration and mobility in Western Australia

State accounts
Western Australia's state final demand (trend chain volume measures) grew 0.7% ($217 million) to $31,323 million in the March quarter 2008. This followed higher growth rate in the previous two quarters of 1.4% ($440 million) in the September quarter 2007 and 0.9% ($282 million) in the December quarter 2007.

Perth's Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose for three consecutive quarters, from 0.6% in the September quarter 2007 to 1.4% in the March quarter 2008. Perth's current quarter price rise is slightly higher than the national CPI rise of 1.3%.

Western Australia's retail turnover (trend) recorded a total of $6,419 million in the three months to April 2008, a decline of 0.1% ($8 million) compared to the previous three month period. For the three months to May 2008, sales of new motor vehicles (trend) in Western Australia decreased by 0.4% (137) to 10,217 vehicles, following a growth 0.3% (104) recorded in the previous three month period.

Investment and finance
Private new capital expenditure (trend chain volume measure) in Western Australia increased by 2.2% (up $118 million) to $5,427 million in the March quarter 2008, slightly higher than the previous quarter's growth of 2.1% (up $111 million). The number of dwellings financed has slowed from a growth of 0.8% (217 commitments) in the three months to July 2007.

In the three months to April 2008, a total of 4,058 houses were approved for construction in Western Australia, 6.1% (264) less than in the previous three month period. Despite the fall in house approvals, other residential dwelling approvals have risen 8.9% (133 approvals) in the three months to April 2008.

Western Australia's trade surplus grew 14.9% ($1,302 million) to $10,043 million for the year to March quarter 2008. Growth in the state's surplus resulted from strong exports growth (up $2,605 million or 18.0%), while imports also increased (up $1,303 million or 22.7%).

Mineral exploration expenditure (trend) in Western Australia grew by 7.7% ($23 million) to $321 million in the March quarter 2008.

A total of 65,051 overseas visitors arrived in Western Australia for holiday in the March quarter 2008, 1,900 (3.0%) more compared to the March quarter of 2007. In the March quarter 2008, a total of 82,825 Western Australians travelled overseas for a holiday, 17,611 (27.0%) more compared to the same quarter of 2007.

Labour market
Job vacancies in Western Australia decreased by 16.9% (down 5,500) in the February quarter 2008. Western Australia's full-time employment (trend) rose 0.4% (up 3,600 persons) to 818,000 persons in the three months to May 2008. The unemployment rate (trend) in Western Australia rose marginally, from 3.2% in February 2008 to 3.4% in May 2008.

Western Australia's estimated resident population was 2,130,797 in the December quarter 2007, an increase of 0.6% (11,929 persons) from the previous quarter. Western Australia's quarterly population growth rate of 0.6% was second to Queensland (up 0.7% or 27,840 persons) and above the national rate increase of 0.4%.

Social trends
SOCIAL TRENDS - Population and Health
In percentage terms, Western Australia's population growth of 17% between June 1997 and June 2007 was higher than the national average of 13% and was the second highest among the states and territories behind Queensland with 23%. In 2006, there were 11,600 deaths registered in Western Australia. The underlying causes of death were mainly cancer (malignant neoplasms), ischaemic heart disease and stroke - together accounting for more than half (55%) of all deaths.

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